Product: Hobgoblin 2
Publisher: Atlantis
Compatibility: BBC/Electron
Reviewed by: Christian Weber
Originally published in EUG #03

Orb Of Altoria

Remember Hobgoblin, the game very similar to Ghosts 'N Goblins on other computer formats? No? Well, let me refresh your memory...

Many years ago in the original game. the peaceful land of Altoria was under attack from Hobgoblins and the undead who usually lurked in the swamps that surrounded the Kingdom. However, under the protection of the Orb of Altoria, the Kingdom was thought to be safe.

Unfortunately, the Orb was stolen and the evil Hobgoblin Lord and his dark forces marched ever closer. The King called upon his son to battle through the infested swamps and on to the Hobgoblin's castle to recover the Orb. The Orb was saved and the people lived without the need to fear again, until now...

The Hobgoblin Lord was merely licking his wounds whilst planning his next attack! Not only was an even greater army assembled but the Hobgoblin Lord's power grew even greater than that of the Orb. This time there is no fall back plan, the Kingdom really is in trouble...

The new King (the old one died!) decides that his son should, like he did, rescue the Kingdom and finally destroy the Hobgoblin Lord once and for all. Not being one to back down, the King's son agrees and steps out into the swamp...

Gameplay

OK, lengthy intro aside, the game plays and sounds exactly as the first one did - no bad thing really. The screen layout is a lot better with a well drawn inventory on the right hand side showing lives, score, etc. The top of the screen shows one of the many new elements to the game. In the original you collected coins or daggers and once you had four your weapon was randomly upgraded.

Now you still collect the coins (which are found once a baddie has been blasted or a chest or urn is shot open) but now you can "save up" for the weapon you want to use. So the more you save, the better your weapon - although the final weapon isn't half as good as the one before it!

Backgrounds are more clearly defined and the baddies are better drawn even if they only have two frames of animation each. You look similar to the way you did in the original game (apart from a massive nose!) and all the same moves are available except now you can climb and descend ladders. A great improvement but be warned: some of the ladders are rotten and cannot support the weight of someone in plate armour!

You'll discover some new baddies - like Death who boldly pelts across the screen at high speed towards you - and some re-drawn old ones, which improve the game no end. The final confrontation is a one-off battle between you and the Hobgoblin Lord and there can only be one winner...!

Verdict

To sum up, the game is utterly brill and totally playable! By the way, David. I await Squiffles with baited breath! [Yewwot?! - Will] A final tip: Try jumping on some tree branches!

Sound ...................... 6
Graphics ................... 10
Playability ................ 10
Value For Money ............ 9
Overall .................... 9